Sunday, October 31, 2010

Turnout Huge For Raese Rally featuring Gov. Palin and Ted Nugent reports that Sarah and Todd Palin made a last-minute "surprise" visit to the Ted Nugent rally for GOP U.S. Senate candidate John Raese in Charleston Saturday afternoon in front of the largest crowd to attend any event held by either Raese or his opponent Gov. Joe Manchin this year. Video courtesy of Freedom's Lighthouse:

An estimated crowd of 2,700 came out on a clear, sunny October day from across West Virginia and sang the "Star Spangled Banner" with Nugent, the rock legend from the late 70s who has emerged as a leading voice for sportsmen and women across America. The event--part political rally, part Mountain State family reunion--was held at Haddad Riverfront Park in downtown Charleston, just a few blocks away from Manchin's residence at the Governor's Mansion.

"The size of this crowd on such short notice should tell us something about the momentum John Raese has going into Tuesday's election," said Jack Ellis, HNN's Senior Political Analyst. "Raese's campaign didn't know that Ted Nugent was going to be able to get here until just a few days ago, and the Sarah Palin visit was added too late for the media to really get ahold of it. Yet nearly three thousand people showed up? Amazing."

"This kind of turnout reminds me a great deal of the kind of crowds George W. Bush had when he visited West Virginia in 2000," said Ellis. "Crowds like this go back home and are great evangelists for their candidate. This single event could put Raese over the top on Tuesday."

According to event organizers, Todd and Sarah Palin took an overnight flight from Alaska to arrive Saturday morning in time for the event.


After the rally in Charleston, the Palins joined the Raeses at a Tea Party Express campaign event in Wheeling.

"This ranks as one of the most interesting of all political events in the past few years here," said Ellis. "With basically two or three days' notice, a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate drew a crowd with concerned Republicans, Democrats, and Independents from across West Virginia. They all agree on one thing--the Obama Administration has got to be reined in. That's their bond, and John Raese is their candidate for U.S. Senate."
- JP

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